Erie Arts & Culture will welcome Brittany Watkins as our next visiting artist in residence. Brittany will be in residence from November 30 until December 20.
In early 2020, Erie Arts & Culture launched a visiting artist residency program in collaboration with Long Road Projects. Through this program, Erie Arts & Culture and Long Road Projects provide contemporary artists with dedicated time and space to reflect, research, and create new bodies of work – outside of their usual environments. This program also creates opportunities for new perspectives and creative processes to be shared, which in turn positively impacts the cultural and creative landscape in Northwestern Pennsylvania.
This visiting artist residency program is made possible through the generous support of a privately funded grant from The Erie Community Foundation.
Brittany will use her time in residence exploring the affects the pandemic is having on the human body and psyche. Brittany is interested in notions of isolation and personal health. She's also curious about how human behavior is changing as a result of the recent increase in time we are all spending interacting with digital devices. While some of these issues have been an undercurrent in her work over the past seven years, this will be her first time placing weight on the physical body alongside the psychological.
"This seems inevitable considering the recent loss of my father and the unprecedented times that the world is currently facing," said Brittany. "Never before have normal people been made to isolate for survival. This has put more reliance on social media and technologies like FaceTime to interact with loved ones and attempt to placate the human condition."
Brittany will use Community Access Media (CAM) as a resource while in residence. Her audio video work will involve costuming, set construction, recording, and post production editing. Brittany will also construct new remnant paintings. To create these site specific installations, Brittany will scavenge objects and items that have otherwise been abandoned or discarded. Brittany's paintings are constructed using hand-stitching, assemblage, and paint application. A community partnership has been formed with the Bayfront East Side Taskforce (BEST) and a blighted property in Erie's historic east side will potentially serve as a site for Brittany's installation.
Brittany M. Watkins (b.1989) is an interdisciplinary, conceptual artist based in the Southern United States. Her interdisciplinary practice investigates the relationship between internal experience and external presentation rendered through a lens of social critique. After spending her first twenty-five years in Carrollton, GA, Watkins relocated to attend graduate school at Florida State University. She has since received acclaim for her video-performance and installation work in the U.S. and abroad, having exhibited in venues ranging from international art fairs and museums to experimental, artist-run-spaces. Her site-specific installation <Accept [(Self) + Elsewhere] was awarded the Juried Panel Prize ($25,000) in ArtFields 2017, where she went on to create a public art installation as a featured artist at TRAX Visual Art Center for ArtFields 2018. Watkins was a finalist for Foundwork’s Inaugural Artist Prize (2019) and later nominated for the Joan Mitchell Artist Prize. She has work in several private collections and has been exhibited throughout the Southeast, New York, The Philippines, Iceland, Estonia, and Berlin. Since 2018, she has participated in residencies such as The Vermont Studio Center, 701 Center for Contemporary Art, and Hambidge Center for Creative Arts & Sciences. She currently lives and works in Columbia, South Carolina as a full-time artist. You may view her newest work at Good News Arts in High Springs, Florida through the end of November.
Are you interested in meeting Brittany or conducting a studio visit?
In the meantime, check out her work below or follow her on Instagram: